Post image for The revered CHEST Journal, now an app for the iPhone & iPad, gets reviewed

Earlier this month we reviewed the free ACCP-SEEK app from the American College of Chest Physicians (ACCP), concluding the app represented an “outstanding resource” to assist with preparation for the pulmonary, critical care, and sleep medicine board exams.  Today we review the ACCP’s other app, the mobile version of the prestigious CHEST journal.

CHEST is the official peer-reviewed publication of the ACCP, and publishes research advancements throughout the multidisciplinary umbrella of chest medicine, which includes pulmonology, critical care, sleep medicine, cardiorespiratory interactions, thoracic surgery, transplantation, and airways disease.  Monthly readership numbers are over 30,000, and the acceptance rate has run 9-13% since 2005.

Among the 43 respiratory journals, CHEST ranks 3rd in impact factor and 2nd in total citations.  Other features of CHEST include sections on recent advances in chest medicine, chest imaging and pathology, topics in practice management, medical writing tips, and pulmonary and critical care pearls.

Read below the jump to learn more about how CHEST Mobile helps deliver CHEST content to your mobile device (iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad).

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Post image for Apple finally joins Bluetooth standards group, could usher in new era of bluetooth medical devices

Today, the Bluetooth special interest group (SIG) announced the addition of Apple and Nordic Semiconductor as members of the organization’s board of directors.  Many of the larger tech companies, especially mobile device makers, have been a part of the board for some time — such as Motorola, Nokia, Ericsson, and others.

This is a big deal for the mobile medical peripheral industry because Apple currently uses a proprietary bluetooth system to interact wirelessly with devices.  The hope is with Apple finally on the board, they will help set ubiquitous standards, enabling medical peripheral devices to communicate with not only their iOS devices, but other mobile platforms as well, and vice versa.

The new push from the Bluetooth SIG is bluetooth 4.0, a bluetooth protocol that takes extremely low battery power.  We spoke with the Bluetooth SIG executive director Mike Foley last year — where a focus of his discussion was how Bluetooth 4.0 standards were basically meant to usher in a new era of low energy  wireless medical peripheral devices.

Unfortunately, Apple’s track record is marked with propriety standards (excluding WebKit), but their willingness to join the board may be a serious push towards creating ubiquitous wireless medical peripheral devices that can communicate with any type of mobile phone.

Obviously, a ubiquitous standard would help device makers with economies of scale, and would incentivize them to produce more innovative products.

When the announcement of iHealth and Withings iPhone connected blood pressure cuffs was made was much fanfare at CES, we were quick to mention how we were huge fans of the technology — but thought the tools were a bit overhyped, leading our original article to have many comments, from those agreeing and disagreeing.

While the iHealth BP cuff has been out for awhile, even available in the Apple Store, it’s competitor, Withings, has finally launched their own version.  Below is a video of Engadget testing the BP cuff in the field.

Incidentally, we’ve been working on a full review of the iHealth BP cuff, which we will post later this week.

Via Medgadget

Post image for Pocket Body iPad Anatomy app helps improve anatomical understanding

According to iTunes: “Award winning Pocket Body features a fully anatomically accurate human character with nine layers of musculoskeletal and neurovascular content…plus over 30,000 words of learning material.”

Pocket Body [Musculoskeletal] demonstrates the full range of capabilities of the iPad. This medical app has recently undergone a major update. It now includes information on nerves, arteries and veins as well as an improved lateral view.

Read after the break to see why it’s become one of our favorite anatomy apps.

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Post image for Pediatric Emergency Drugs is designed to help in critical pediatric emergencies

by: Mohamed Gaffoor, MD

Pediatric Emergency Drugs is designed to be a quick med list calculator for pediatric emergencies. For folks who deal with pediatric emergencies have the challenge of not only determining the proper drugs to use, but also to get the dosage right by age.

At the first page you are met with a screen to enter the age of the child and either allow the program to pick the estimated weight or put your own weight in. This is a nice feature as often in pediatric emergencies patients arrive through the door needing immediate care and a weight is unavailable. The estimated weight it appears to pick is the 50% for a boy of the selected age. Allowing you to pick the gender of the child would be helpful in narrowing down the weight a little further since girls of a given age would weigh a little less.  Another option would be to allow the use of Broselow colors. These days the standard for most ERs is the Broselow tape which is a plastic foldable tape that doses based on length.

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Post image for EMS ACLS Guide app can deliver critical information while in the field

By: Rajat Kumar, MS3

Emergency care begins well before patients reach the doors of the Emergency Room. And numerous studies have shown that despite high-tech critical care units, the fate of our sickest patients often rests in the speed and intelligence of the paramedics and first responders who first arrive on scene. So its crucial that they be intimately familiar with the up to date critical care algorithms.

The EMS ACLS Guide by Informed Publishing offers these initial providers with an array of information, easily accessible on iOS and Android platforms.  The developers admittedly target their app at EMTs and first responders, but this app could also be a valuable tool for all healthcare providers.

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Post image for Call for abstracts for mHealth Summit: deadline approaching

The premier US event for mobile health technology, the mHealth Summit, is calling out for physicians and health technologists to submit abstracts for the upcoming December conference. The abstract submission page is here but you have to hurry up ! The deadline for abstract submission is July 8.

Topics of interest include

  • Research Tools for Remote Monitoring/Assessment
  • Health Promotion/Disease Prevention
  • Disease Screening and Diagnostic Tools
  • Maternal and Child Health
  • Infectious or Acute Disease
  • Chronic Disease Management
  • Health Disparities and Underserved Populations

Abstracts can be submitted in one of three tracks:

  1. TECHNOLOGY: Categories that examine the technologies being deployed today while also exploring new technologies currently under development.
  2. BUSINESS: Focus on moving the debate forward by addressing the business models that impact mHealth with a focus on lessons learned, best practices, and the emergence of commercially viable models to scale mHealth globally.
  3. POLICY: Showcase of healthcare, technology and investment communities seeking regulatory clarity on wireless medical technologies to accelerate this promising engine of health care innovation.

iMedicalApps is a media partner for this important event. We know that our readers are among the most technologically savvy physicians. Please let us know if you are submitting abstracts or would like to collaborate. We look forward to meeting some of our readers at the meeting.

Post image for CathSource app brings cardiac catheterization to life with videos and images on the iPhone & iPad

Cardiac catheterization, developed for clinical use by the German physician Werner Forssmann in the 1930s –when he catheterized himself through his own forearm– remains the gold standard for the investigation — and in some cases, management — of a variety of cardiac and coronary conditions.

While these procedures are primarily performed by cardiologists and supervised cardiology fellows, an appreciation for cardiac catheterization represents a valuable skill for internal medicine residents as well as medical students interested in cardiology.

The CathSource app, developed by Drs. Bilhartz and Mahjoobi (cardiologists from Texas A&M) of ECGsource LLC and sponsored by Scott & White Healthcare, aims to assist healthcare professionals in the understanding and recognition of cardiac pathology via cardiac catheterization multimedia.

ECGsource LLC develops materials to help medical trainees prepare for the cardiology boards, and originally focused on EKG interpretation (their EKG database now features over 500 unique EKG’s).

ECGsource LLC has since expanded to offer materials providing instruction on echocardiograms and catheterizations, developing similar EchoSource and CathSource databases.  Similar to their ECGsource app, the CathSource app is a scaled-down version of (or supplement to) the full database (which costs $99/year for individuals) at ECGsource.com.

Read below the jump to learn more about how the CathSource app can deepen your appreciation for cardiac catheterization procedures with virtual cath images and videos. (read more)

Post image for Shoulder Decide beautifully demonstrates and teaches basic shoulder anatomy and pathology to patients

Musculoskeletal problems are very common in medicine, making up a large portion of visits to family physicians and emergency departments.  Given how short visits are, it is often quite difficult for a physician to adequately educate patients about their condition.  Basic terminology such as “ligament”, “rotator cuff” or “bursitis” are often not well-understood by the general public, and thus confusion may persist even after the physician has explained the diagnosis.

Shoulder Decide, available as separate iPhone and iPad apps, sets out to ameliorate this situation by educating patients about common shoulder problems. If I were to describe the app with one word, it would be “beautiful.” And that design factor, in addition to well-selected content, make this app a great asset to improve patient-physician communication.

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Post image for Brown Medical School will require medical students to use iPad medical textbooks via Inkling

In a little seen nugget published in an article of the Chronicle, the Ivy League medical school, Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, will be requiring their incoming medical students to use the Inkling e-book app for key medical textbooks in their first year of medical school.

They will be requiring their incoming first year class to purchase iPads as well.

We have been the first to report how and why Inkling is a game changer in the arena of medical e-books when we reviewed Ganong’s Review of Medical Physiology:

Ganong’s Review of Medical Physiology for the iPad allows you to highlight, write notes, view innovative multimedia modules, and easily search for content — taking what you can do on a paper based textbook to a higher level — and taking e-learning to a completely different stratosphere.

The three key Inkling textbooks that will be required by Brown University’s medical school: Essential Clinical Anatomy, Grant’s Atlas of Anatomy, and Bates’ Guide to Physical Examination and History Taking.

The medical school’s director of preclinical curriculum, Luba Demenco, had the following thoughts to share with the Chronicle on the iPad implementation into the curriculum:

….she was on the fence about whether to require students to purchase Inkling versions until she read through them herself. The interactivity and portability sold her, and should be a great plus for students, she says. “Being able to have an educational tool made all the difference.”

The chapter option, she adds, was not an important part of her decision. Indeed, Brown students will still be expected to purchase entire texts and retain them as a reference. Dr. Dumenco does think the chapter option could be useful for students looking to brush up on concepts—cell biology, say—that they were expected to have learned before medical school.

The chapter version that Dr. Dumenco is referencing is the ability to buy single chapters, a feature we spoke highly of in our original review: (read more)

Post image for Clinical Exam helps students prepare for OSCE and USMLE Step 2 exams and more

By: Tom Lewis, MS 2

Traditionally, medical education has been essentially an apprenticeship, with trainees largely learning by doing. More and more however, medical programs are utilizing simulation environments to teach students in safe environments. For the physical exam, that is the OSCE – objective structured clinical exam. Intended to teach students exam skills in a “low-pressure environment,” for many, these experiences have actually turned into another high-pressure exam.

Clinical Exam is designed to test and improve the practical clinical skills of medical students with impending exams. Unlike other applications focused on clinical skills, such as Physical Exam Essentials, this application is purely dedicated to helping students pass their OSCEs. Clinical Exam provides clinical cases and grading schemes to allow you to investigate many different examination scenarios. Read on to find out how well it accomplishes this task.

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Post image for Pocket Lab Values provides is a well-designed reference but lacking in important areas

By: Rajat Kumar, MS3

The number of things for which physicians can send tests seems to be growing at an exponential rate. And as we continue to gain insight into the biologic and biochemical basis of medical conditions, physicians use these tests even more to diagnose disease, follow progression, and assess effectiveness of therapy.

And as any medical student can tell you, interpreting lab values is a skill that takes time to master. Pocket Lab Values by developer Joefrey Kibuule – who is also a medical student – for the iOS platform attempts to provide healthcare professionals with a concise guide to common labs with reference values and the correlating clinical conditions in an easily accessible reference at the point-of-care. Though well-designed, it has some important limitations that we found limiting for its overall value.

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